Lockout

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It may not be the biggest hit at the box office this weekend, but Escape Plan could wind up a cult favorite. As our review states, it’s “entertaining” and “gloriously silly.” And truth be told, it’s the first movie for either Arnold Schwarzenegger or Sylvester Stallone in about 20 years that deserves a sequel. Or needs one, because personally I found the team-up of these two 1980s action heroes a little less fun than I’d hoped. Honestly, I dozed off a bit in the middle. But Escape Plan 2 could be bigger and even more entertaining and much sillier in an even more glorious way. For starters, I’d like to see a follow-up where the actors are actually equal, dual protagonists rather than seeing Arnie as a sidekick along for another one of Sly’s adventures. Maybe the sequel could instead reverse the premise and have it be Schwarzenegger’s character’s story. Instead of coming up with original ideas to pitch to the makers of Escape Plan, and potentially just have them stolen, I’ve selected 10 plots that already exist in other movies, which could be remade for Escape Plan 2, Escape Plan 3, etc. And the good thing is many of these titles are already in line to be remade. Just tweak the scripts with some one-liners referencing both stars’ past hits, and you’re good to go!

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The Best Action Movies of 2012

Movies are many different things to many different peoples. A film may tug at your heart strings, tickle your funny bone, or change the way you look at the world. But sometimes all you want from a movie is an adrenaline shot straight to the heart, a testosterone booster right to the balls, or whatever the female equivalent of getting really hyped up over an action film is. 2012 didn’t see the apocalypse, but it did see a bunch of cinematic ass-kickery, the best of which is counted down here for your pleasure.

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This Week in DVD

Welcome back to This Week In DVD! I’d apologize for the title above, but those are actually legitimate elements of four of the releases below. Okay, maybe the Susie Salmon one is sophomoric wordplay related to the otherwise boring Salmon Fishing In the Yemen, but the others are completely legit. I swear. As always, if you see something you like, click on the image to buy it. The Inbetweeners: The Complete Series When Will’s mother moves him from private to public school he thinks his life is over, but thanks to three new friends he’ll be wishing it really was. Will’s anal, Simon’s a bit too gullible, Jay’s an irresponsible tool and Neil is a bit of an idiot. Together they’re hilarious. This UK series ran for three seasons, and each is literally better and funnier than the last. Each episode is essentially what the American Pie movies think they are… crass, heartfelt and funny as hell. [Deleted scenes, outtakes, commentaries, featurettes]

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The Hunger Games

See, this is why there’s no ESPN in the future, because every show they had would only cover The Hunger Games. Once again, the juggernaut about a dystopian American Idol where teens fling arrows at pre-teens and everyone laughs and laughs and laughs hit the #1 spot, overshadowing three new films. But before we talk about them, let’s dig into where this Lionsgate film, the reason you hear corks popping in their hallways every Sunday afternoon, stands in history. It currently sits with $337m domestic and another $194m foreign. While half a billion dollars worldwide isn’t exactly a ground-shaker these days – 93 films over history have hit the $.5b mark – it’s still impressive business for the studio backing it. With $78m, The Hunger Games‘ reported budget and most of which pulled in from the Saw franchise and Tyler Perry movies, Lionsgate grabbed up The Hunger Games property, actually cared about how the film looked unlike some recent high-property franchises, and ended up with a good film that’s just raking in the dough. The Hunger Games would have done impressive business on the branding alone, but it’s the general concern for how the film looks and plays that’s making it such a phenomenon.

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Stop me if you’ve heard this one before – in a future America, an important member of the First Family gets trapped in an inventive super-max prison the likes of which we’ve never seen, and the only person who can save them is a sharp-tongued criminal. Sounds pretty familiar, right? Unfortunately, James Mather and Stephen St. Leger‘s Lockout is no Escape from New York, but dammit if Guy Pearce‘s performance doesn’t hit some gleeful Snake Plissken-inspired high notes in the midst of some serious cinematic mess. Mather and St. Leger’s take (which comes from an original idea from co-writer and producer Luc Besson) on the “one man against a mega-prison” moves the action away from not just New York, but Earth itself – setting the majority of Lockout in a super prison in the sky. MS One is the first of its kind, a space prison that uses the unique advantages of its location to isolate its prisoners twofold – not only are they trapped in space, they’re also sunk into a deep stasis that should guarantee that escape is not only impossible, but also unthinkable to their conked-out brains. Unfortunately, as we’re told repeatedly, “some minds just can’t take it,” and the philanthropically-minded Emilie Warnock (Maggie Grace) has just arrived on MS One to interview some recently awoken prisoners to gauge the effects of their stasis. Emilie also happens to be the President of the United States’ only daughter, a fact that the audience knows from the get-go, even […]

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Last month was eclectic. We got Disney‘s like-it-or-hate-it box-office bomb, a sweet and violent comedy following the goons of hockey, one ass-kicking and nonstop action picture, an 80s TV show adaptation that was better than it originally had any right to be, and a Tarsem kids’ film that defied most expectations based on that horror story of a trailer. A pretty strong March, and that’s not even counting The Hunger Games. Before we head into the unpredictable summer movie season, we got 30 days filled with a plenty of excellent and probably not-so-excellent releases coming out. Here are 8 1/2 movies worth seeing this month.

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Unfortunately for this year’s WonderCon, I was only able to spend one day at the convention. When busting your cherry, convention or otherwise, it is often best to go nice and slow. While I’d have loved to get a few more hours at the convention, which moved to Anaheim, California, this year, I did more than just get my toes wet. Because it was raining. I spent the better, longer part of Saturday sitting in the massive ballroom at the Anaheim Convention Center, just down the street from Disneyland, staring up at a gigantic screen projecting clear images of actors, actresses, writers, and directors which, to my naked eye, were tiny specks about a quarter of a mile away. The panels I managed to get into included Lockout, Battleship, The Amazing Spider-Man, and Resident Evil: Retribution, so let’s all take a look together at the joyous cinematic wonders they had to show!

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Guy Pearce in Lock-Out

The teaser trailer for the upcoming Guy Pearce vehicle Lockout (formerly Lock-Out) gave us a glimpse at the rogue charm Pearce has mustered up in the lead role, but it didn’t let us in on much of what the movie is actually about. The new full-length trailer over at IGN gives us a bit more of that Pearce sass, but it also lays out pretty much the whole plot. Some of my favorite movies ever take multiple genres and blend them together. Sometimes blending genres creates a tonally weird mess (Cowboys & Aliens), but when you do it right you create something fresh and new out of used parts (Serenity), and it seems like Lockout has some potential to do the latter.

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published: 12.23.2014
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published: 12.22.2014
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published: 12.19.2014
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